While the guys over at Cloud Imperium Games put a ton of effort into keeping the community updated on development progress several times each week, the game only hits mainstream news when something major is announced. Even though the team puts out a whole suite of different posts, ranging from videos showing how they fix bugs through star-system lore written up by their creative team all the way to in-house interviews, something major like, say, a new spaceship being announced, is needed to make a bigger splash.
The latest ship to be unveiled is one that looks quite different from anything seen in Star Citizen before, from a stylistic standpoint. While so far everything we’ve seen more or less follows a sleeker and obviously far-future aesthetic, this newest ship takes a different approach. The recently announced Esperia Prowler rather looks like something that dropped out of a near-future military sci-fi action flick, or even a game like Deus Ex.
The backstory of the Prowler is that it’s a recreation of a historic ship used by the Tevarin, one of the many alien races in the Star Citizen universe. The Prowler’s main role is that of a troop transport, as it has stealth abilities, unique magnetic thrusters for low-altitude atmospheric flight and individual hatches for the soldiers being carried for quick deployment and extraction.
Star Citizen’s already broad lineup of ships is constantly being added to, and this is hardly the first dropship in the selection. That said, the Prowler manages to stand out by virtue of its unique design, both in terms of visuals and gameplay. While most ships can be used in a number of creative ways, those geared towards being dropships didn’t really have a stealth angle until now. The two main advantages the Prowler has is stealth systems and the individual troop hatches. The latter effectively removes the main drawback of traditional dropships, which is the single ramp or hatch being an obvious bottleneck target for any opponents on-site.
Those familiar with Star Citizen will know that one of the most popular dropships is the Redeemer, which is an entirely different beast compared to the Prowler. While the Prowler will likely live up to its name, the Redeemer is a much more aggressive ship with greater focus on offensive capabilities alongside the transportation of other players or NPCs into battle. While the Redeemer is likely to blow stuff up on the approach, the Prowler will deploy troops without the enemy even noticing.
Like all ships in Star Citizen, the Prowler will be available in-game, for in-game currency, upon launch. The ship was briefly available for real cash following reveal, however, it has since been pulled from sale – though it will likely resurface every now-and-then when there is some special event going on. You can also probably grab one on the Star Citizen gray market for a massively inflated price, but the latter option does much to damage the game’s economy – and your wallet.
In other news, Cloud Imperium Games’ writing team has released another system-profile. The game’s second star system to be named after a German city, Bremen is being set up to have quite a bit of historic significance in the game. Those familiar with the lore and backstory of the game will know that prior to the events of Star Citizen, the United Empire of Earth – the human spacefaring civilization – was ruled by the tyrannical Messer dynasty, which was a xenophobic and oppressive establishment. The Bremen system was key to the eventual downfall of the dictatorship, which gave way to the much more peaceful Federation-esque government which allows for humanity in Star Citizen to not seem like a bunch of space-nazis.
Star Citizen will be rolling out its next major update in the following months. Currently, a single star system is playable for early adopters and backers of the massively ambitious game on PC.